Keyboardist Ben Xu is the winner of the prestigious George Duke Keyboard Scholarship at Musicians Institute.
The multi-talented Bachelor of Music Performance student comes to MI by way of China having performed and studied a wide array of musical genres including: Classical, Jazz, Afro-Cuban, Brazilian, Neo-Soul and Pop music on the piano and keyboard.
Ben explains that he chose to study at Musicians Institute because “two years ago I decided to study music professionally and I found MI’s official website. I learned that the MI keyboard program not only had performance courses but also DAW courses such as Logic and Protools, that helped me to decide to come to MI.”
During his studies, he plans a continued focus on “understanding harmony as many ways as possible and to improve the phrasing in my improvisations. Barry Harris once said “You don’t think about the chords. You just play a melody.”
After MI, Ben’s career aspirations are to “become a professional musician eventually, be a gigging keyboard player and producer.”
Everyone at MI congratulates Ben on this achievement. We look forward to seeing him reach his full potential while at MI.
Special thanks to Rich Buchanan and James Chesser on behalf of the Stanley Clarke Scholarship Foundation; who generously funded this scholarship to honor the exceptional talents and artistic career of the legendary George Duke. The scholarship provides talented students like Ben with the support, tools and recognition they need to launch successful and creative careers in the music industry.
The Drum Program at Musicians Institute and The Musicians Foundation are pleased to announce that Lina Anderberg has been named the winner of the prestigious Greg Priest Memorial Drum Scholarship, which was created to honor the life and career of MI alumnus Greg Priest.
When the talented, multi-stylistic drummer (pop, funk/soul, hybrid) was asked to share her thoughts about receiving this scholarship award, Lina stated: “This means so much to me, I can’t describe it in words. I’ve been trying to do my best in school, and this scholarship gives me an acknowledgment of what I’ve accomplished so far. I’m very honored and grateful for this.”
As a continuing student at MI, Lina described her educational experience as follows, “The teachers in the Drum program are the best, I’ve grown so much during my time at MI. I’m looking back at my first quarter when I could barely read a single note, and I cried every day for weeks, wanting to quit. I really want to thank my Reading, Technique, and Performance instructors for not giving up on me! I want to give very special thanks to Fred Dinkins, who has great patience, sees all my weaknesses and gives me endless with tools to develop as a drummer and musician.”
She acknowledged that her future professional goals and career aspirations have evolved during her studies at MI. Lina shared that “I’ve developed a big interest in modern pop-country music, and the artists I’d like to play with live in Nashville, so I’m thinking about moving there after I graduate. I also have a strong interest in songwriting and playing multiple instruments. That’s something I want to continue working on and hopefully write songs for other people.”
Everyone at MI congratulates Lina on this achievement. We look forward to seeing her reach her full potential while at MI.
We thank the family and friends of MI alum Greg Priest for their generous support of this scholarship and the education of a deserving MI Drum student.
Musicians Institute and The Musicians Foundation are pleased to announce that current MI student Akshay Dakhane is the recipient of the 2020 Takamine Acoustic Guitar Scholarship. Akshay comes to MI’s Guitar Program from Mumbai, India with several years of guitar playing and performing experience in multiple genres including Blues, Jazz, R&B, Country, Rock, and Indie music.
Akshay shared that his primary areas of focus during his MI Guitar Program studies include: “expediting my songwriting process, guitar playing, theory, ear training, keyboard playing, songwriting, music business, marketing, Photoshop and production (Ableton). He also added that “I am currently enrolled in the Guitar AA Degree Program with an emphasis on Independent Artist Program. MI has been a plethora of information so far! There is so much to learn.”
He sees his MI education as an important key to achieving his dream of one day being able to “entertain people and make them smile. I want to write controversial songs, bringing attention to charities I believe are doing something noble like feeding the underprivileged and educating them to change their circumstances. I aspire to write music that is thought provoking, something I feel is lacking in music produced today.”
When asked what does winning this scholarship award mean to you? Akshay shared “I’m going to be honest, I really really wanted this scholarship! I don’t have an acoustic guitar and I really wanted a Takamine guitar. Every time I used to practice in school, I used to borrow the Takamine acoustic guitar from the MI library. I can’t wait to play the new guitar!”
He added, “on a serious note, due to COVID-19, every industry has suffered economically, including my father’s. My parents are supporting me financially to go to MI and I’m deeply grateful to them. Just to have a little burden taken off their shoulders helps immensely. Thank you Takamine!”
Everyone at MI congratulates Akshay on winning this prestigious scholarship award, as he continues his studies at MI!
Special thanks to our longtime industry partner, ESP and Takamine Guitars for generously sponsoring this scholarship, which helps to provide talented students like Akshay with the support, tools and recognition they need to launch successful careers in the music industry.
Be sure to visit Takamine Guitars to learn more their full line of guitar products, and their exciting partnership with ESP Electric Guitars.
The Drum Program at Musicians Institute and The Musicians Foundation are pleased to announce that Lina Elina Anderberg, (who comes to MI by way of Sweden) has been named the winner of the prestigious Evans Drumhead Scholarship for spring 2020.
The multi-stylistic drummer (pop, funk/soul, hybrid) has been playing and performing for the past 7 years. When asked to share her thoughts about receiving this scholarship award, Lina stated: “This scholarship literally means everything to me, financially but it’s also an acknowledgement that all my hours in the practice rooms pay off, and I’m motivated to keep up the speed and energy!”
During her studies, she plans to focus on “my reading, learning more about rudiments, technique, and improving my theory/ear training skills”.
Lina acknowledged that she chose to study at Musicians Institute because “I’ve been wanting to be a student at MI since I started to play drums. I have many friends that went to MI, and I’ve heard so many positive things about this school. There are many talented students here from all over the world, and I can get so much knowledge and inspiration from people here. I wanted to take a huge step in my education, and I chose MI because I feel like I can develop my musical skills the way I want to, and I also have all the opportunities to learn other instruments and programs like Ableton at MI.”
She described her future professional goals as follows: “my goal is to be on tour all over the world and have a dope drum tech!”
Everyone at MI congratulates Lina on this achievement. We look forward to seeing her reach her full potential while at MI.
Special thanks to our longtime industry partner, Evans Drumheads and The D’Addario Music Foundation for generously sponsoring this scholarship, which helps to provide talented students like Lina with the support, tools and recognition they need to launch successful and creative careers in the music industry. Evans has been a pioneer in drumhead design for over 50 years and is a committed supporter and advocate of music education.
To learn more about the full line of Evans Drumhead products click here.
The 2020 President’s Award Vocal Scholarship has been awarded to Musicians Institute Vocal Program student: Stephanie Howie. She comes to MI by way of Chennai, India, having earned the prestigious award with a strong demonstration of her many years of singing and performance experience with a specialization in Soul/Neo Soul/ Rhythm & Blues genres.
Describing her reasons for coming to MI, Stephanie states: “after months of research I found that MI was the only school that could offer me exactly what I was looking for which was to work on my vocal skills and ability as well as my performance skills. I was particularly drawn towards the live performance workshops. Also, being located in the epicenter of the entertainment industry I felt like it would be an ideal stepping stone to a career in the field of music and entertainment.”
While at MI, she hopes to focus on: “improving my vocal ability and training, I hope to learn as much as I can from MI to improve my technique, work on my tone and my stage presence and also gain all the confidence I need to be a performer.”
She sees her education as an important pathway to achieving her career goals to: “first and foremost, be able to penetrate the industry using the skills that I adopt from my time at MI to become an active performer and an established recording artist in the entertainment industry. My second career goal is to combine my what I’ve learned at MI along with my past degrees in Psychology and find avenues in the field of Music Therapy.”
Stephanie shared her feelings about winning the scholarship as follows: “I consider myself extremely lucky and thankful for my mum who having raised me single handedly has always taught me that if I work hard enough towards something that I want that I’ll get what I deserve. She has been the most supportive of my decision to pursue music (it did take some convincing) and is now financially supporting this move as well. This scholarship not only helps me in my first steps at repaying her and making her proud(er) but also gives me the confidence boost I need knowing that there are others in the industry who believe in me and my talent and in turn pushing me to work even harder than before.”
Everyone at MI would like to congratulate Stephanie on winning this prestigious award.
Special thanks to MI’s longtime owner Histake Shibuya for generously sponsoring this scholarship, which helps to provide talented students like Stephanie with the support, tools and recognition they need to launch successful and creative careers in the music industry.
The 2020 President’s Award Music Business Scholarship at Musicians Institute has been awarded to newly enrolling Associate of Science in Music Business Program student: Devin Birden. He comes to MI by way of Lancaster and Long Beach CA, earning the prestigious scholarship award after clearly articulating his vision and career goals within the music industry.
Describing his reasons for coming to MI, Devin states, “a friend of mine attends MI currently and is in the music production program. He has had nothing but positive reports about his experience. Also, the information I received at the MI Open House, and my frequent dialogue with my Admissions counselor have all been determining factors that lead me to wanting to enroll at MI.”
In giving a bit more background about his motivations to enroll at MI and to excel in the music industry, Devin stated: “in addition to being an independent Hip Hop artist and songwriter, I am a business owner myself. I run a full spectrum entertainment studio where we offer recording and production services, in addition to graphic design, photography and videography. I hope to be able to learn all the current business practices in the music industry while also learning how to navigate more efficiently all the pitfalls and road blocks that I have had to traverse throughout my career. In addition, I am interested in music supervision for film & tv, as I have landed a couple big placements in the past, I want to continue to pursue my career in that arena as well.”
Devin sees his education as an important pathway to achieving his career goals as an artist, multi-genre songwriter and multi-dimensional music industry executive: “I want to remain independent and achieve global success doing so. The more I know how to do myself the less I have to depend on anyone else’s expertise. As an executive, I’d like to operate my own entertainment company, develop artists underneath my imprint and put them in position to do great things in music as well. I also feel I have a future in music supervision in film & tv, so I want to land more placements both nationally and internationally. One of my current specific short term goals is to be a part of Disney’s The Proud Family reboot, as it is of one of my favorite childhood shows.”
He shared his feelings about winning the scholarship as follows: “this scholarship means everything to me. At this juncture in my life I am choosing to make a major change and sacrifice in order to attend MI. This scholarship will be a tremendous help to me in pursuing my career goals in a myriad of ways and I am thankful you all saw something in me that proved deserving of it.“
Everyone at MI would like to congratulate Devin on winning this prestigious award.
Special thanks to MI’s longtime owner Histake Shibuya for generously sponsoring this scholarship, which helps to provide talented students like Devin with the support, tools and recognition they need to launch successful and creative careers in the music industry.
Congratulations to our Board of Directors 2020-2022!
BOARD CHAIR 2019-2021 Hunter Scott Head of Marketing & Publicity @TREND. Established LaFamos- a full-service PR firm in 2008. Head of Brand Development for High Q Digital, Public speaker, panelist.
Andrea Bari, JD Expert adviser in intellectual property rights, music publishing contracts, business law. Researcher for the UN Special Rapporteur in Cultural Rights. Law and Business professor at Musicians Institute. *NEW*
Andy French SVP sales and marketing for DMI Music, and has previously held positions with the GRAMMY Foundation and A&M Records *NEW*
Anika Paris CEO Alaya Productions; WB Composer, Songwriter, Author, Educator in Artist Development *NEW*
Steve Sherr Independent music executive. Former music marketing executive at Disney Music, Universal Music Group, Interscope Records, MCA Records, Hollywood Records, Former Artist Management at The Artists Organization. *NEW*
Ellen Truley Music Business Brand Strategist I Corporate Marketing I Partnership Integration I Digital Marketer I Entertainment Relations
Beth Marlis (Foundation Executive Director), Vice President at Musicians Institute, musician, educator, author, Chair Emeritus of Hollywood Chamber of Commerce
Kathleen Clark (Foundation Secretary), Professional Photographer. Former Director and Partner in SPOT Photo Works, and Clark | Oshin Gallery LA. Longtime Photo Director of Los Angeles Magazine and LA Weekly
Kyle Denne, (Foundation Treasurer), Accounting Manager at Musicians Institute